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Photo courtesy of Lake Placid Lodge

Hotel Central: New England’s Snug Ski Lodges

Throw another log on the fire and get cozy at these four Northeastern getaways

By Jackie Caradonio

From the January/February issue of National Geographic Traveler magazine.

As winter’s first heavy snows bury New England under a fluffy blanket of white, the region’s best ski resorts come alive with the crackling of firewood and the humming of chairlifts.

Vermont Old farm buildings dot the hilltops surrounding the Wildflower Inn (from $149), located just 10 minutes from Burke Mountain ski resort in the quiet village of Lyndonville. Innkeepers Jim and Mary O’Reilly oversee the day-to-day activities at the 515-acre property, where the federal-style main house features a farm-to-table restaurant. Its 24 cozy guest rooms are housed in a converted coach house, blacksmith shop, schoolhouse, and carriage house. Cross-country skiing starts in your own backyard, with the area’s Kingdom Trails running along the property. Beginning in early March, trade skis for snowshoes and enjoy a quiet walk through the inn’s maple forest to the local sugarhouse, where David Dolloff, the neighboring sugar maker, teaches visitors about syrup tapping and grading, and often provides samples of the freshest batch.

New Hampshire Woodrow Wilson, Thomas Edison, and Alfred Hitchcock have all stayed at this elegant hotel in Bretton Woods, now known as the Omni Mount Washington Resort (from $189). Today, guests return to this grand resort for its stately Spanish Renaissance architecture and its location next to the highest peak in New England. Gilded Age accents—Tiffany stained glass, ornate crown moldings, and brass fixtures modeled after Edison’s first electric lamp—highlight the resort’s National Historic Landmark status. Take a break from the slopes with a ride down the zip line, which races through Rosebrook Canyon’s snow-covered valleys.

New York A catastrophic fire ravaged the 19th-century Lake Placid Lodge (from $500) in 2005, but following a painstaking three-year reconstruction, this Adirondack Mountains landmark has been restored to its original refined splendor, accentuated with Hudson River school paintings, exposed wood beams, and fieldstone fireplaces. Tucked along the edge of Lake Placid, the lodge’s 17 cabins and 13 guest rooms now feature designer touches like Persian rugs, handcrafted log-and-twig beds, faux fur throws, and picture windows that frame the lake or Whiteface Mountain, whose slopes are just a 20-minute drive away.

Maine Upon stepping into the log cabin-style Great Room at the rustic Loon Lodge (from $110) on Rangeley Lake, you’ll find things as they were more than a century ago when the family camp first opened in 1909. Adorned with handmade quilts and Old Hickory furniture, this nine-room retreat in Maine’s western mountains unplugs from modern-day intrusions like televisions and telephones. The slopes at Saddleback Mountain are a short drive away. Closer still are the region’s top-rated snowmobile trails, which travel as far north as Canada.

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